A literary giant, Saul Bellow loomed large over writers attempting the Great American Novel, since many would argue that he has already achieved this feat at least once over. He was considered a foremost chronicler of the Jewish-American post-war experience, but the "human understanding and subtle analysis of contemporary culture that are combined in his work" are what won him the Nobel, and helped him transcend cultural and national borders.
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Also Known As:
Solomon Bellow (real name)
Date of Birth:
June 10, 1915
Place of Birth:
Lachine, Quebec, Canada
Date of Death:
April 5, 2005
|Place of Death:
University of Chicago, 1933-35; B.S., Northwestern University, 1937
National Book Awards for The Adventures of Augie March, 1953; Herzog, 1964; and Mr. Sammler's Planet, 1970; Pulitzer Prize for Humboldt's Gift, 1975; Nobel Prize for Literature, 1976
|Henderson, the Rain King|
It has long been rumored that folk singer Joni Mitchell was inspired to write "Both Sides Now" from a line in this novel, which is the satiric description of a malcontent millionaire's search for meaning in the universe. It's widely considered to be Bellow's most humorous novel.
|Breakthrough Book||The Man Behind the Letters|
|The Adventures of Augie March|
The New Republic has called Bellow's third title the "best postwar American novel"; Martin Amis called it the "Great American Novel." Whatever you call it, Bellow's chronicle of a Depression-era dreamer won him his first National Book Award and established him in the literary pantheon.
|Bellow: A Biography|
A writer for Salon quipped that Atlas had been "famously at work" on his Bellow biography "since he was in short pants." Well, actually it was about 10 years -- but Atlas delivered a "biographical tour de force," according to London's Evening Standard.